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17 Nov 2020

Photos by Porsche AG

Getting to grips with winter tyres

Are you readying your rubber for the months ahead? Porsche’s premiere driving guru explains the importance of winter tyres

For many members, the arrival of winter spells a period of hibernation for their Porsche. Shorter days, snow, ice and the prospect of salt on the roads means that our cherished classics are, by and large, better off tucked up for the off season. But 21st-century Porsche ownership is a year-round affair for lots of us, thanks to the versatility of cars such as the Macan and Cayenne, not to mention the all-wheel-drive 911.
Porsche has always made its cars to be driven, of course, and even its most performance-oriented products now come equipped with a suite of intelligent safety systems that make light work of the worst sort of driving conditions. But there is one variable beyond the reach of your car’s increasing digital omniscience and that’s tyres. While many European countries have made it a legal imperative that you switch to winter rubber by the middle of the autumn, it remains entirely optional in the UK. And it is an option remarkably few of us choose to take up.
The comparatively mild figure of 7C is recognised as the point below which the rubber compound in traditional summer tyres hardens. This causes a noticeable drop in all-round performance that increases braking distances by up to 12 per cent.

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